“Nothing to lose” says Va. A.G.
Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli announced Thursday morning that he will seek an immediate review by the U.S. Supreme Court of the Commonwealth’s constitutional challenge to the health care legislation passed amidst much controversy last year. Cuccinelli has made a rare, yet expected, request to bypass the appellate court and ask that the matter be fast-tracked.
Introduced by host Stuart Varney on Fox Business Channel this morning as “America’s most controversial Attorney General,” Cuccinelli outlined the process he is seeking in his battle against the ‘ObamaCare’ individual mandate to purchase health insurance.
“The Supreme Court has a rule, Rule Eleven, that allows them at their pure discretion to expedite these cases by which we mean the Court of Appeals, and we have asked them to do that in this case. The Federal Government wrote in our case recently that this is a case of the highest order of magnitude of importance in public policy and we completely agree,” explained Cuccinelli.
“We also believe there is just tremendous uncertainty, not only in the Commonwealth of Virginia’s own Budget but in the private sector and in the other forty nine states’ budgets as well regarding implementing a law that we don’t know is going to be in place in a year and a half and we would like the Supreme Court to accelerate that process,” the Virginia Attorney General said.
Asked what his chances were with this long shot, attorney general Cuccinelli said it was less than even.
“This is not a common course for the Supreme Court but the truth of the matter is, in terms of the timing and the schedule, we have nothing to lose. We’re already expedited in the Fourth Circuit – we are scheduled to be heard in oral argument the second week of May in the Appellate Court, at which point we figure they will decide in June or July and we end up in the Supreme Court next year anyway.”
“We can try and cut a year off this process by taking this course and given the ruling on Monday in Florida, where Judge Vinson threw out the entire law, surely there is enough question now about the outcome that it warrants expediting the case. It really is royalling the country and making it difficult from a budget standpoint,” said Cuccinelli.
U.S. District Court Judge Hudson ruled in Virginia in December that it is unconstitutional to require individuals to purchase health care insurance. The federal government immediately appealed to the 4thCircuit Court of Appeals and is expected to fight Cuccinelli’s motion filed this morning to skip the review.
Monday of this week saw Judge Vinson in Florida rule the law unconstitutional in a separate yet similar law suit jointly filed by 26 states. Two other cases have been brought before federal judges and ruled constitutional.